pataki header graphic

- suspended campaign Dec. 29, 2015 -   





Democracy in Action
Pataki for President

GovGeorgePataki  |

...announced candidacy May 28, 2015

We the People, Not Washington PAC

...super PAC announced Jan. 22, 2015 [FEC]
Americans for Real Change
The Pataki-Cahill Group

Conventional Wisdom
- Accomplishments as three-term governor.
- Combines business and government experience.
- Has been out of office and the public eye too long; last elected in 2002.
- Effort thus far has been very New Hampshire-centric, raising doubts about whether he will be able to run a national campaign.
- Conservative criticism of his record as governor.

Notes, Coverage and Speeches

photo of gov. george pataki at the iowa ag summit
March 7, 2015 - Iowa Ag Summit in Des Moines.
April 16, 2015 - At the Red Arrow Diner in

2015 - Former Gov. George Pataki flirted with running for president in 2005-06 and in 2011, and as 2015 began he again showed interest.  On Jan. 22, 2015 Pataki announced formation of a super PAC, We the People, Not Washington PAC.  According to its website the super PAC was formed "to support Governor Pataki's future agenda to empower the citizens of our great nation, dismantle the perpetual growth and overreach of the federal government and begin reducing the size of the federal government to a more appropriate level."  The website lists a number of Pataki's accomplishments as governor including tax cuts, private sector job growth, reduction in the size of government, reduction in welfare roles, and reduction in crime.  It notes, "While we are not campaigning to elect a President, it is our hope the Governor will be encouraged by the positive support he hears from you."  One idea he advanced was a law that would ban members of the House or Senate from ever lobbying.  Although, the National Draft Ben Carson for President Committee and Run Warren Run efforts opened New Hampshire offices earlier, Pataki's We the People, Not Washington PAC was the first entity officially connected to a potential candidate to open an office in the Granite State; Pataki did the honors on April 16. 

On May 28, 2015 at Exeter Town Hall in Exeter, NH Pataki announced that this time it was for real: he was a candidate for president (+); at the time of his announcement he had spent more time in the Granite State than any major potential or declared candidate. 

Pataki continued to focus most of his efforts on New Hampshire.  As the campaign progressed, he emerged as a frequent critic of Donald Trump (+).  He participated in four of the five undercard debates held in 2015.  Pataki did not gain any traction, however, and he did not even file a delegate slate in New Hampshire.  On December 29 Pataki announced he was suspending his campaign (+).

2014 - Former Gov. Pataki, serving as spokesman for an entity called Americans for Real Change, made two trips to New Hampshire (the first on Oct. 19-21 and the second on Nov. 23-14) and one trip to South Carolina (Dec. 1).  In October, Americans for Real Change ran an ad featuring Pataki calling for "a new America, with much smaller federal government."

Note: Pataki endorsed Sen. Marco Rubio on Jan. 26, 2016.

George Pataki with Daniel Paisner.  June 1, 1998.  PATAKI: An Autobiography.  New York: Viking Adult.
"He'll give readers the inside story of his incredible upset victory and bring us into the governor's mansion to show the day-to-day job of running the diverse state of New York--the issues it raises, the choices he makes, the beliefs that determine how he governs. Told with warmth and wry humor, the governor's story shows that winning politics can still come from a simple source--straight from the heart.."

George J. Marlin.  Oct. 2006.  SQUANDERED OPPORTUNITIES: New York's Pataki Years.  South Bend, IN: St. Augustine's Press.
"In this first commentary on the Pataki administration, George Marlin, former Executive Director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and New York Conservative Party activist, traces how fiscally, economically, and culturally Governor Pataki sold out to leftist interests.  In SQUANDERED OPPORTUNITIES, Marlin contends that the Pataki Administration did not possess a philosophical compass.  Political expediency overwhelmed any political philosophy, and 'political conscience' and 'political ideals' were mere slogans used to patronize conservatives."

this page last revised January 30, 2016